Thursday, January 30, 2014

Protestant conversionary missionaries and colonialism

It appears that some recent work has found a health-giving relationship here:
For example, Mackenzie's campaign for Khama III was part of his 30-year effort to protect African land from white settlers. Mackenzie was not atypical. In China, missionaries worked to end the opium trade; in India, they fought to curtail abuses by landlords; in the West Indies and other colonies, they played key roles in building the abolition movement. Back home, their allies passed legislation that returned land to the native Xhosa people of South Africa and also protected tribes in New Zealand and Australia from being wiped out by settlers.
Given our tendency to think of nothing good when considering colonialism, this is a surprising result. Worth passing on I think.

Bill Morrow once quipped that the whole Old Testament is about governance - I think I agree with him - but what is healthy governance and how do we get there from here (where here is, even in our own world, a tendency towards self-preservation rather than governance).